An Alberta man who was convicted of criminal harassment for his participation in the vigilante group Creep Catchers has been fined and sentenced to probation by a judge in Red Deer, Alta.
Carl Young, also known as Karl Murphy, impersonated a 15-year-old boy with the intent to confront the victim, a man he ultimately met up with in Lacombe on Nov. 23, 2016. Young recorded a video of the confrontation. during which he accused the victim of illegal acts with minors.
Young then posted the video on the Red Deer Creep Catchers Facebook page. Creep Catchers is a group of citizens who post videos online to expose people they believe are seeking minors for sexual activity.
In handing down the sentence, provincial court Judge Darrell Riemer called Young’s conduct “repugnant and malicious.”
The victim has always denied any illegal intentions, and his father says his son believed he was delivering a winter coat to a needy teen.
“Our main message is that this is not how you deal with the law in this country,” said the father. “We wanted to see this come to a close in this manner.”
The victim suffered “significant personal trauma,” said Riemer, who reviewed some of the effects he suffered, including feelings of worthlessness and thoughts of suicide.
In a statement prepared for the sentencing hearing in December, the victim said the video ruined his life and made him feel “broken and unworthy to live.”
Riemer imposed a $1,500 fine. He also ordered Young to spend 12 months on probation under a number of conditions, including that he not possess electronic devices capable of sending and receiving messages.